Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Making It Harder to Measure So Customers Spend More

A disgraced local director has produced a movie 'Money not Enough' in 1998 to portray the financial problems in this now the most expensive city in the world.

Besides wages being suppressed by massive influx of foreign workers, corporations are using discreet ways to wring more profits out of people. They are pretty successful in making more profits by making consumption hard to measure.

I'm an old-fashioned guy when it comes to washing myself. I still use soap. Many people have switched to shower foam which is costlier. Not only is it costlier, people use more of it since liquid form squeezed onto their palm are hard to measure.

The container of shower foam is often opaque as well reducing consciousness. End result: Hard to measure so use more(spend more). Along the same reasoning behind more spending via credit cards (not seeing cash) than cash(more prudent).

I'll bring a small sized soap(cut to size if necessary) with me during overseas trips on budget accomodations. Is more practical than packing a small bottle of shower lotion which the bottle might spill inside the luggage.

1.5l plastic bottle = 4.6 cans of 325ml aluminium cans
1.5l @ $1.40 (sale)
48cans @ $17.90 (sale)

Did you realise there's less & less aluminium can drinks sold in 24 pack-cartons at supermarkets? The plastic 1.5l bottle has become the de-facto way by which drinks are sold. I very seldom order drinks even when eating at hawker centres due to the absurd markups. I might buy natural drinks like sugar cane but not the others.

Drinks are often sold in 1.5l bottles at supermarkets instead of aluminium cans for the same reason - people don't measure when pouring unlike a limited can. End result: pour more to drink so spend more.

The thoughts of others be it not-close friends, acquaintances, coworkers of me being so hard-up on not spending money on a drink during meals doesn't bother me. In the journey to financial security, hard choices have to be made. It doesn't make much sense for me to pay for a severely mark-up drink with ice when i drink to my heart's content(still find it hard to do so) by buying a large bottle or a few cans more for the same price at the supermarket.

If one succumb to peer pressure to look good by spending money on too much unnecessary stuff early on, the financial journey will be even tougher ahead.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Winners Create/Play by Their Own Rules - Indonesia's Haze Weapon

Hazardous air quality in western part of the island during the afternoon today before a thunderstorm brought a bit of respite. For a reminder of how terrible the visibility is at hazardous air quality do refer to a 2013 blogpost: Worst Haze, Decline of Condensed Milk & Emergence of Creamer.

The worst is on last thursday night(hari raya haji) when the haze reached hazardous zone leading to the closure of primary & secondary schools the next day on friday. Thus it became a 4 day long weekend for pupils.

Here is how it is at very unhealthy levels when i took the photo during the thursday afternoon before it worsened to hazardous levels at night:

For a clear day comparison please look at Dismal Few Flags Displayed in 2015 for Singapore's 50th Birthday (open in new window)

The hybrid regime spends a whopping amount on defense. In the elections earlier this month, its gargantuan machinery printed rebuttals to S'pore Democratic Party's policy proposals. Massive manpower are mobilized to distribute those rebuttals to peasants. Among which is that it is dangerous for SG to cut defense spending by 40%.

I've already blogged just days before the election campaigning start that South Korea's Vietnam War Era Aircraft Shows How Absurd Singapore's Defense Budget Is. Unfortunately, many peasants believed the hybrid regime's drivel. Few realize that the opponent might not follow rules as what we peasants are trained by the hybrid regime's education system to be obedient rule followers.

Why Play By the Winners' Game?
Using the haze to damage SG without mobilizing a single armed soldier is the smart way to do things by Indonesia since their armed forces are so much weaker. Get creative & no absurd military defense budget needed.

History is replete with examples of the underdog who is outgunned/outnumbered who win by refusing to play by the game rules of their strong opponents:

  • Impressive Maginot Line built at enormous costs - Hitler simply invaded neutral Belgium & then thrust into France(surrender after 6 weeks).
  • Vietcong refuse to fight conventionally with US forces during the vietnam war as much as possible. They resort to guerrilla warfare.
  • Sept 11, 2001 - Terrorists using their creativity in turning jetliners into flying missles.

Winners are winners because they are good at playing the game in a particular way. Why engage them in ways they are good at?

Majority of Peasants Playing a Losers Game Set-up by Hybrid Regime
Foreign workers are to a huge extend very obedient in following instructions. Why would they risk rocking the boat? Just shut up & earn as much S$ to retire back home. Their strong obedient trait coupled with their cheaper salaries is very appealing to bosses. Locals attempting to outcompete them by being even more obedient are a wishful thinking lot.

If competing with obedient foreign workers by being even more obedient is not enough, there's machines as well which would do a person in - Being Obedient & Follow Instructions Mindlessly = 'Die' Even Faster (blogpost)

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Swing Voters Not Thinking Logically & Long Term in Singapore 2015 Election

I volunteered as polling agent(am shift) for S'pore Democratic Party(SDP) in the general election held last week. Although i don't support lebian/gay, the policy papers published by SDP is better than the Workers Party which is the preferred alternative party among peasants. Manifesto 2015 of the Workers Party(WP) has improved over its 2011 but i still consider SDP's proposal better than WP's.

Another reason i chose to volunteer for the SDP is they are the best hope in the west for winning parliamentary seats.

History Repeat Itself

Duties of Polling Agent (am shift)
I was the only polling agent(am shift) at the polling station i was assigned to. The hybrid regime has 4 polling agents & they rotated once during my 6 hour shift, hence there's 8 of them. All the hybrid regime polling agents are busy with their work of striking voters name out on their list by referring to the polling coupon number called out by the presiding officer. eg. 001 Tan Ah Kow called --> Strike out 001 from list.

Alternative party polling agents don't have the list(required to buy). This is an uneven playing field besides shortage of manpower by alternative parties (1 vs 8).

I was dressed in party colors(red shirt & khaki pants) as we're told to do so. The presiding officers who are from the civil service all wore neutral colors. To my surprise the hybrid regime polling agents also wore neutral colors as i read from forum on a thread calling for volunteers that they are all 'white'(previously). Perhaps they themselves are prepared about the reduction in votes for the hybrid regime hence is better to wear neutral colors.

The most important task of a polling agent is to arrive early at 7:30am to inspect the ballot boxes to make sure they are empty prior to sealing at 7:50am. Thereafter the work of an alternative party polling agent is akin to an invigilator during exams. Polling agents can listen in to presiding officers explaining voting procedures to their 'blur' people. Nobody is supposed to tell voters who to vote in the polling station.

During the slightly more than 6 hours i was there, i didn't go to toilet(emptied before start). Preferably there should be 2 polling agents(alternative party) at a polling station. I had to watch over 4 ballot boxes & luckily all 4 boxes are in straight row.

My shift ended when a girl(red shirt) relieved me. At end of my morning shift, around 75% of voters have voted. Went back to my constituency to vote.

For the pm shift polling agent, the most important task is that there are no fake boxes on the transport bus. Witness the proper sealing of the box slot. If possible, board & accompany the transport bus to the counting center.

Dismayed at 70% Voting for Hybrid Regime
Even though Singfirst is the alternative party standing in Clementi, i voted for them anyway. I went to bed early due to sleepiness as i didn't get much sleep in the hours leading polling agent duty.

It is to my shock the morning i wake up to learn that practically all the swing voters voted for the hybrid regime.

The rot in the country is there for everyone to see (blogposts):

And yet these fencesitters chose to give a strong mandate to the hybrid regime! How daft can they be?

Even the hybrid regime itself doesn't expect such a landslide win as they:

  • field a suicide team in Adjunied & yet they lost by a thin 1.9% (1% swing & they would recapture)
  • carved out sacrificial small areas such as Fengshan, Macpherson, Bukit Batok (yet win handsomely)

I would say the fencesitter voters are daft. They are not thinking logically & not looking at the bigger picture. Why?

  • Those rot & decay i mentioned earlier.
  • Manifestos/policy papers by SDP & WP are better than the hybrid regime's picture book with little details.
  • WP contesting 28 seats out of 89 parliamentary seats. Even if win all, still need another 2 seats to be captured by another party to form 33% alternative voice in parliament. Hence hybrid regime with majority seats would still form the government.

So with these logic, i don't see a reason not to vote for alternative party to reduce the popularity of the hybrid regime. Yet practically all the middle ground vote for the hybrid regime...

Repeat in 2015 election
......but even more despicable are those swing voters' blind devotion.

Why Swing Voters Ought be Prioritized for Retrenchment
Imagine you are a boss/supervisor. Would you want to have daft workers working for you despite all those logically reasons presented to him/her & yet they still chose to be bullied by the vendor/supplier by giving a strong mandate?

All these kiasu(scared lose) , kiasi(sacred die)  & daft workers who are not thinking logically & not looking at the bigger picture would eventually give you more trouble. The single engine dominated jetliner is performing poorly & the daft passengers still don't want to have an alternative engine as backup.

How can you compete if your competitors are hiring & surrounding himself with workers who are better able to think long-term for themselves?

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Why People Who Take Pictures with Highly Unpopular Minister Are Dangerous

Today is the last day of campaigning for the general election before polling day on Friday. The hybrid regime knows it is a sure win in Jurong constituency where i live. Same goes for West Coast constituency so they don't bother holding rallies in both. Hottest contest are raging in the east against the Worker's Party challengers.

The closest contest near where i live is Holland-Bukit Timah constituency which is a few hundreds metres away. I have mentioned in 2 blogposts about the US embassy inviting Chee Soon Juan of SG Democratic Party to their independence day celebrations. So far i would say the american diplomats are right on in their ground sentiment assessments of SG.

The first day rally video of CheeSJ have gone viral with over 500,000 views on youtube(1 of duplicate video is now removed). It is a marvelous comeback for CheeSJ who has been cast as a baddie by the hybrid regime & many sinkies are brainwashed into thinking so.

Many have awoken from the brainwashing after watching the Day 1 video as the audience for SDP's rallies grew day by day by day. During the early days of the campaign, the hybrid regime has concentrated its guns on Worker Party in the east over the town council issue. As the audience for SDP rallies surge over the days, the hybrid regime found another headache in the west & thus turned most if not all their guns to SDP in the west.

To show how scared shitless the hybrid regime is towards CheeSJ & his team, one just need to watch 2 videos of the 2(out of 4) defending hybrid regime candidates.

Vivian Bala fled from CheeSJ on Sunday morning at Bukit Timah hawker centre.
  • At 4:11 he scared take pics facing CheeSJ (he turned his back).
  • Made his escape at 5:40.

Why People Who Take Pictures with Highly Unpopular Minister Are Dangerous

Vivian Bala is infamous for:
  • $104M budget for Youth Olympic Games but overspent to $387M
  • You want 3 meals in a hawker centre, food court or restaurant? as reply to request for $1 extra in allowance a day for the needy.
  • Only rich or corrupt people work for free (how the heck does Wikipedia succeed then?!)

With these 3 obnoxious stains on him, it bewilders me that peasants would want to take photos with him. Even the US embassy would rather invite CheeSJ to their national day celebrations than associate with Vivian Bala.

Imagine you are a supervisor, boss, friend, acquaintance & saw a person you recognize taking photo with Vivian Bala. Would you dare give that person higher responsibility and/or promote him? If he/she can betray his/her conscience just for a photo, he/she can betray the boss/company, friendship.

Blind devotion from peasants who still associate with that obnoxious minister by taking photo with him.
Do those blind devotees know they just took photo with a coward who fled when phototaking is done?

If those blind devotees can disregard their conscience by taking photo with an obnoxious minister, what else can they disregard with respect to their supervisor, company, friends? It also shows those peasants are emotional if they still proceed to take photo to be "associated" despite Vivian Bala being an obnoxious minister.

Now, let's go on to his constituency teammate- Sim Ann. I'm sure glad she shoot rubbish out of her mouth to boost her chances of losing in the election. It shows how desperate the hybrid regime is having resorted to gutter politics.

She represent the epitome of gutter politics for the hybrid regime- "......pattern more than badminton. Orh hor hor hor ;) "

For this general election, the hybrid regime is clueless. Their manifesto is pathetic compared to workers party & democratic party manifestos which are fleshed with details.

What the disarrayed hybrid regime do is:

  • a picture book manifesto with little details.
  • harping on town council issue against worker's party.
  • legacy of the dead lee kuan yew
  • dangle carrots like swimming pool, childcare centres, hawker centres
  • gutter politics

It will be a close contest in Holland-Bukit Timah. Peasants & rich folks(a major area) in this constituency ought to vote out these 2 aristocrats who look down on peasants.